Based on Maynard’s story and my experience, I recommend that a single person contemplating adoption look carefully at their motivation and at the resources for support that they could bring to single parenting. Recognize that raising an adopted child is not the same as parenting a biological one. Try to separate your real feelings about parenting from negative external stereotyping of a single, childless person. Consider alternative ways to have children in your life. In research for my book, The New Single Woman, I found that one of the six criteria for living a satisfying, long-term single life was a connection to the next generation. Such a connection does not depend on raising a child. I include many examples of single women without children who created rewarding relationships with children and young adults.
One needs a community and friendship network to adopt successfully as a single parent, but such support also forms the basis for a happy single life without parenting. As a society, we need to reevaluate family as only one among alternative ways to live a good life.